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Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Jan. 2

Wednesday, January 2nd
Wheeling Nailers Weekly Report, Jan. 2

Last WeekThursday, December 27th: WHEELING NAILERS 2 @ Indy Fuel 5The Wheeling Nailers experienced quite the run, as they earned points in nine consecutive games, leading into their holiday break. Unfortunately, that streak came to an end on Thursday, when Wheeling visited the Indy Fuel. Josh Couturier tallied a 4-on-4 goal in the first period for the Nailers, but that was the lone bright spot early, as Indy rolled out to a 3-1 lead. Kevin Dufour tacked on his second of the night in the opening minutes of the third for the Fuel, and that proved to be too much for Wheeling to overcome, despite an attempt at a comeback with a Yushiroh Hirano power play tally. Matt Tomkins made 33 saves in net for Indy, defeating Matt O'Connor, who suffered his first loss in seven decisions.

Friday, December 28th: WHEELING NAILERS 5 @ Kalamazoo Wings 6Things were looking rough for the Nailers in the second period of Friday's match at Kalamazoo, as they trailed the Wings, 4-1. However, a late second period power play turned out to be just the spark the club needed. Michael Phillips scored with the goaltender pulled for an extra attacker, Mark Petaccio followed with a goal 37 seconds later, and 22 seconds after that, Phillips' second of the night pulled Wheeling even, 4-4. Cedric Lacroix put the Nailers ahead at the 7:49 mark of the third period, but former Nailer Reid Gardiner had a finish to remember, tying the tilt with 5:50 remaining, then snapping the 5-5 deadlock on the man advantage with 9.5 seconds left on the clock.

Monday, December 31st: Reading Royals 0 @ WHEELING NAILERS 4New Year's Eve is a night that hockey fans in Wheeling look forward to, and for good reason, as the local squad has now delivered home wins in 14 of 25 contests on the final day of the calendar year. The 2018 closer featured the team's second shutout of the campaign, as John Muse returned to the Nailers by stopping all 28 shots he faced against his former club, the Reading Royals. Alex Rauter and Troy Josephs both tallied on the man advantage, while Cedric Lacroix and Yushiroh Hirano added even strength markers. Wheeling has won five straight games on home ice.

This WeekThursday, January 3rd: Toledo Walleye @ WHEELING NAILERS, 7:05 p.m.Saturday, January 5th: WHEELING NAILERS @ Toledo Walleye, 7:15 p.m.History has favored the home teams when Wheeling and Toledo have gotten together in the past, but in the first three matches of 2018-19, the road teams have had the say. The Walleye escaped WesBanco Arena with a pair of one-goal victories in November, before the Nailers solved the spell during Wizard Weekend with a 5-2 triumph at Huntington Center on December 8th. Toledo currently sits in second place in the Central Division with a 21-7-3 record, but on Monday night, the Walleye fell short, 4-1 to the division-leading Cincinnati Cyclones, who remain unbeaten in regulation at home.

Friday, January 4th: WHEELING NAILERS @ Indy Fuel, 7:35 p.m.Two visits in two weeks is all that's on the schedule for the Nailers when it comes to facing the Fuel at Indiana Farmers Coliseum. After watching Wheeling win two of three games at home to begin the season set, Indy defended its home ice last Thursday with a 5-2 decision against the Nailers. The Fuel still have six more trips to Nail City on their slate. Indy has won four of its last five games, including a 6-2 thumping of the Kalamazoo Wings on New Year's Eve. The Nailers and Fuel are tied for third place in the Central Division, and both squads have played 31 games.

Notes- The Nailers have scored 56 goals in their last 12 games, going 9-2-1.- The team scoring the first goal has won 14 consecutive games and 23 of 31 on the season.- Cam Brown led the ECHL in assists (19) and points (26) in December, while Nick Saracino tied for the league lead in goals (12) and +/- (+16) in December.- Josh Couturier and Mark Petaccio scored their first ECHL goals last week, becoming the ninth and tenth Nailers to achieve that milestone this season.- Wheeling is 15-7-4 all-time on New Year's Eve, with this season's shutout being the first ever on that date.

Central Division Standings1. Cincinnati Cyclones 22-6-2-2, 48 pts.2. Toledo Walleye 21-7-3-0, 45 pts.3. WHEELING NAILERS 16-13-2-0, 34 pts.4. Indy Fuel 17-14-0-0, 34 pts.5. Fort Wayne Komets 16-14-0-1, 33 pts.6. Kalamazoo Wings 15-16-0-1, 31 pts.

Team LeadersGoals: Nick Saracino- 17Assists: Cam Brown- 26Points: Nick Saracino- 37Penalty Minutes: Cedric Lacroix- 91Plus/Minus: Nick Saracino- +17Wins: Matt O'Connor- 7Goals Against Average: John Muse- 2.69Save Percentage: John Muse & Matt O'Connor- .903Shutouts: John Muse & Matt O'Connor- 1

Next Big Promotional NightSaturday, January 12th - Nickelodeon Night Featuring SpongeBob & Patrick, Scout Night

Next Five Home GamesThursday, January 3rd vs. Toledo Walleye, 7:05 p.m.Friday, January 11th vs. Utah Grizzlies, 7:05 p.m.Saturday, January 12th vs. Indy Fuel, 7:05 p.m.Sunday, January 13th vs. Indy Fuel, 3:05 p.m.Friday, January 25th vs. Brampton Beast, 7:05 p.m.

Upcoming Home Games

Full Schedule
Faith & Family Night
Sunday, March 3rd
Faith & Family Night
Puck Drops:
4:10 PM EST
WesBanco Arena
Cincinnati Cyclones
CIN Cincinnati Cyclones
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena
Education Day
Tuesday, March 19th
Education Day
Puck Drops:
10:45 AM EDT
WesBanco Arena
Indy Fuel
IND Indy Fuel
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena
Frosty Friday
Friday, March 22nd
Frosty Friday
Puck Drops:
7:10 PM EDT
WesBanco Arena
Kalamazoo Wings
KAL Kalamazoo Wings
at
Wheeling Nailers
WHL Wheeling Nailers
WesBanco Arena

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